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Visualizing [visualizing.org] has just been released as the latest online player in the ever-increasing blogosphere about the topic of data visualization. But Visualizing is different in many ways. For one, the man behind the Visualizing initiative is Adam Bly, founder and Editor-in-Chief of Seed and one of the people behind the impressive Design and the Elastic Mind exhibition at MoMA. Together with the fact that Visualizing is also supported by a wide range of highly reputable design institutions, the website positions itself as the most serious media player in the field of data visualization, enjoying an unseen amount of credibility and financial funding.

While Visualizing.org's mission is to help make data visualization figure more prominently across the web as a way of understanding complex world issues as they unfold, it is not a weblog in the classic sense. Instead, the site is open and all free to use (they developed it with support from GE), and operatew under a CC non-commercial license. Visualizing thus aims to become the online resource for designers and students looking for data sets (curated by Seed) about world issues, while offering an open platform for the creative community to share the resulting visualizations with each other and the public at large. In addition, Visualizing wants to provide media organizations, conferences, and blogs with a wealth of information design to support their communications, and offers schools the chance to showcase the work of their students and help bring data visualization into the classroom.

The website has just been launched and it officially still in beta, but many more features are planned. Expect soon a weblog, design competitions (the first one is available here), conferences and workshops, sponsored challenges and much more.

In any case, infosthetics.com highly welcomes this new initiative. I believe our field is in high need for a unifying platform for people to share the same interests, insights and issues, also in particular towards augmented the visual literacy in modern education. The fact that the people behind Visualizing seem open to others to cooperate and collaborate makes this a promising start to something that might shape our field.

What do you think of this new initiative? How can infosthetics.com help them out (and vice versa)?


At first I thought wow this is great, a clear platform to advance the discipline and connect people with interesting visuals. But then tried to find out who is driving it, and it says a 'community' on the about page, but in the terms and conditions it says it is a website owned by GE. That's a little unclear to start with.

GE has been doing some really interesting work in this area, but to date the data viz sites like this have been run by passionate individuals who direct and curate content. It's going to be interesting to see how over time this platform works. I think it's a sign that things are scaling up in the discipline, and it's a clear conduit for connecting journalists with CC data viz content. Will be interesting to hear what others thing.

Mon 04 Oct 2010 at 10:54 PM
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